Feeling Good is an audio wellness app accredited by the NHS, which, up until now, has only been available in English. However, thanks to Feniks (who work with the Central-Eastern European community in Scotland) approaching us to translate our app, and the University of Edinburgh providing us with a grant, we are planning to release a Polish translation of Feeling Good in the next few months.
Feniks are a charity providing psychological support and community development projects for the Central Eastern European community in Edinburgh and Scotland. Research shows that Polish men are twice as likely to die by suicide than Scots, partially due to the lack of support in Polish (ScotPHN, 2018).
“The translation will help reduce the mental health inequalities affecting the local Polish community.”
The COVID-19 pandemic has exacerbated mental health problems in the UK, with people in Scotland facing psychotherapy waiting times of over 18 weeks. The wait is even longer for the Polish community, who have to wait over 12 months to be seen by a Polish-speaking counsellor through Feniks.
Therefore, the aim of this project is to give the Polish community in Edinburgh (with a population of around 20,000) a self-help tool to prevent and help mitigate mental health problems. Translating Feeling Good into Polish will mitigate the well-evidenced language and cultural barriers to local Polish communities accessing mental health services (EIJB, 2018; Feniks, 2020).
Having the app in Polish is going to give the 200-odd clients on Feniks’s waiting list a degree of control over their mental health, starting the healing process before they are able to see a specialist. It will also act as a prevention tool for people who do not require specialist mental health support, but would still benefit from stress management techniques and relaxation tools.
“As a non-native speaker I know how difficult it is to ask for help in a foreign language and I have used Feniks’s wellbeing services a number of times myself. This grant will open up access to the Feeling Good wellbeing audio programme to a whole new group of people living in Scotland and beyond. Additionally, it might open the door for our wellbeing materials to be translated into other local minority languages, which would multiply the impact of this grant!”
– Dr Pawel Orzechowski, PhD, Feeling Good CTO
Feniks’s interpreters Basia and Gosia are currently translating the tracks into Polish. We are almost ready to record. We can’t wait to share the Polish translation of the Feeling Good App with you soon, and we hope this will be the beginning of further development to our accessibility.
In photo: Basia in her home recording studio.